puzzle-lg.jpgThe First Annual Madison Research Challenge

  • Open to all Madison Local Schools students in Grades K-12.
  • Winners will be selected from three levels--Elementary, Middle School, and High School.
  • Selected winners and runners-up will be honored at a Madison Board Of Education Meeting.
  • Winners will be presented with a special award/prize, an awards dinner, and their winning research will be published in a Madison Schools Research Monograph.
  • Research can be selected from the list of possible topics listed on this web site or from an original question or interest of the student.
  • Research can be done individually, or by small groups of students working as a research team.
  • Research can be presented in any of the following formats: --podcast (audio report,) vodcast (video report,) magazine article, written report, research poster (either on-line or on a presentation board,) power point presentation, an on-line book or a physical/paper book, or some other creative presentation media.

How do I get involved in this First Annual Research Challenge?

  • Pick a topic or ask a question you would like to investigate further.
  • Fill-in the entry form which is printed below (click on the button to get a version of the entry form downloaded to your computer.)
  • Hand your entry form to your school principal.
  • Proposed topics will be reviewed by each school and when your topic or question is approved, you are "good to go!"
  • Start your research--investigate your question--collect your data and information--create your research presentation.
  • Remember, your finished research can be in the form of a --podcast (audio report,) vodcast (video report,) magazine article, written report, research poster (either on-line or on a presentation board,) power point presentation, an on-line book or a physical/paper book, or some other creative presentation media.
  • Be prepared to present your research product by May 1st to a group of teachers and principals from the Madison schools. Winners will be announced by May 28th.

Research Challenge Timeline

When To Enter
Approval Of Research Project
When To Start Research
When To Turn In Your Research Project or Presentation
Beginning of 2nd Semester or ASAP
ASAP After You Submit It
As Soon As You Receive The "Go Ahead"
As Soon As You Are Finished or Anytime Before May 1st


Possible Research Topics

1. What aids to memory has mankind developed ? How have they been utilized ?. What is now current and what is foreseen in the future?

2. How do you get a patent and what does it do for you? How is it described? Who judges it’s validity ?

3. How do ants learn to do things? Do they cooperate in pursuit of a common goal? How can we investigate this and come to a conclusion about ant cooperation?

4. Where is the line between learning and instinct. How do we understand which is which? How can this be studied?

5. Trace the history and application of the knot. How has this influenced our society? Our clothing, Our art? Our commerce? Suggest future possibilities.

6. Trace the history of robots. Where are we now? Where are current developments headed? Do you see a possible danger in this? Are there advantages to using robots? Disadvantages?

7. What is currently being done to the Panama Canal? Why? What old engineering was involved in its construction? What new engineering is involved? Who benefits?

8. What is a welfare state? Where might one find a welfare state? Evaluate strengths and weaknesses.

9 What help to man’s progress is due to his knowledge of sub atomic particles? What is currently known and what research is ongoing?

11. What role do colors play in our emotions and understanding. Where has this function already found practical application?

12. From pyramids to large ships, trace the history of man’s movement of mass (specifically large masses.) Suggest future possibilities.

13. What is “dark matter”? Where are we in our understanding of dark matter? What kinds of research are we currently doing to discover more about "dark matter"?

14. Compare United States methods in teaching foreign languages to that of European countries. Then consider the new needs of Spanish language knowledge in the US. Can an argument be made that the US adopt some of the European approach in this country? What do you see as the social and economic advantages and disadvantages. What about other languages?

15. From the wolf to present day dog, research the development of so many distinctive dog breeds. What is the role man has played? What research has been done in the past? What are the current understandings about the variety of dog breeds?

16. Research and compare the influence of the French horn in classical and modern music. In the US, in other countries?

17. Research the evolution and regional development of hats and head coverings through the ages and identify the reasoning behind changes.

18. Who is Ron Popeil and why is he considered a modern day genius?

19. How are cats and dogs similar? How are they different? How did the differences help their ancestors survive in their natural environments?